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Link to PHAST-R

Improving Communication for Older People

Our research is focused on improving hearing communication for older people. We study the effects of cognitive aging and age related hearing loss on people’s ability to perceive speech. In our studies we focus on both the effects of bottom up (peripheral hearing) and top-down (central processes) processing on older people's ability to perceive speech and successfully use hearing aids. The long-term goal of our work is to increase the benefit and satisfaction that older people receive from wearing hearing aids and using other assistive listening devices.

PHAST-R Now Available


We developed the Practical Hearing Skills Test-Revised (PHAST-R) as a clinical tool to be used by clinicians to objectively measure a hearing aid user’s ability to perform tasks representative of critical hearing aid use and care functions.  The   PHAST-R includes eight items that assess hearing aid skills typically taught to new hearing aid users during their hearing aid orientation. A clinician rates the hearing aid user’s performance on each of the eight PHAST–R tasks, and the software then automatically computes an overall performance score.  The results from the PHAST-R can quickly identify specific hearing aid functions for which a hearing aid user needs further counseling and training.  End User License for the software may be purchased online via Syracuse University's iBridge.


Dr. Doherty is also a member of the Aging Studies Institute and the Center for Aging and Policy Studies

News & Directions

Medical Mission to Ethiopia
Dr. Doherty traveled March 16-25 to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on a medical mission with Healing the Children.
In the News
Listening Devices Help Preserve Confidentiality in Hospitals For Hearing-Impaired Patients
Where we are (click here)
621 Skytop Road, Suite #165-13 Syracuse, NY 13210
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Cited by The Hearing Journal as one of the best papers published in...

Aural Rehabilitation (2009)

Desjardins, J. L. & Doherty, K.A. (2009). Do experienced hearing aid users know how to use their hearing aids correctly? The American Journal of Audiology, 18, 69-76.

Hearing Aids (2007)

Shi, L. F., Doherty, K. A., Kordas, T. M., & Pellegrino, J. T. (2007). Short- and Long-Term Hearing-Aid Benefit and User Satisfaction: A Comparison between Two Fitting Protocols. Journal of American Academy of Audiology, 18 (6), 482-495.

Hearing Science (1998)

Huckins, S.C., Turner, C.W., Doherty, K.A., Fonte, M.M. & Szeverenyi, N.M. (1998).  Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging of blood flow patterns in human auditory cortex in response to speech.  Journal of Speech, Language and Hearing Research, 41, 538-548.